Blue Jays Player of the Week – Donaldson vs Travis Redux
The rollercoaster continues for the Blue Jays. This past week (April 20-26th) saw three straight wins followed by three straight losses. It was a tale of two teams but a few players managed to perform consistently throughout the week. It was the same two candidates who led the pack this week.
Last week, it was the starters who were terrible but this week it was the relievers. Ok, just mostly terrible or terrible at the worst times. Aaron Loup, Marco Estrada and Roberto Osuna were all solid (Osuna didn’t even really deserve the one run charged to him this week as some will remember from a few nights ago) but none were even close to PoW honours.
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Last week I said that, “I would really love for there to be a starting pitcher in the running for PoW next week,” and lo and behold, there were two. Unfortunately, the other three starts ranged from shaky to awful. Daniel Norris and Drew Hutchison both put together great starts. Norris’ outing was notoriously botched by the pen. Both struck out 7, Drew over 8 IP and Daniel over 7. Hutch didn’t walk anyone but let in 2 and a HR. Norris walked 3 and let in 1 with no dingers. We’ll give the slight nod for pitcher of the week to Drew because of the extra inning of work and because of the unselfish play he made throwing to second instead of trying to cut down a run at the plate.
For the first week this year, Kevin Pillar did nothing superhuman. For shame!
Danny Valencia had another solid week of limited work with three hits, 2 doubles and 1 BB in 7 ABs.
Jose Bautista had his huge in-your-face revenge home run but that was his only hit in 5 ABs as he was sidelined with his shoulder issue. Bautista in rampage mode is awesome but risky it seems.
Justin Smoak only had 3 hits but two of them were HRs and he had 3 BBs—good for a .996 OPS.
Russell Martin had a .852 OPS in 17 ABs and continued to throw out runners at an absurd pace. Nearly 50% of would be base swipers have been gunned down by the Canadian backstop. Taking away from Martin’s chances here have been the performances of his pitchers which has continued to be pretty poor overall. Of course, only some of the blame belongs to Martin.
The top 2 are the same guys as last week. Josh Donaldson and Devon Travis. Once again, we’re going with Devon. Both had a great seven days at the dish but Travis’ OPS was nearly 200 points higher and he’s continued to play the part of a slugger knocking in 2 more HRs. He also threw in a SB, 2 doubles and 7 hits in 19 ABs. There’s no doubt that he’s the frontrunner for the AL Rookie of the Year award at this very early stage.
There’s a few candidates for Razzie of the Week. Jose Reyes’ 2/19 (2 singles and no walks) week, Dickey’s miserable start and Castro’s very shaky week. We’ll give Castro a pass for being overworked and hand Dickey the razzie.